Removing Your Kids “Artwork” from The Carpets

September 17, 2014

Do you have a budding Picasso on your hands? Or perhaps you are the proud parent of a creative, independently minded preschooler that loves to finger paint with every chance he gets? Being artistic is a talent, but when your child draws his latest masterpiece on your carpets, it can be a detriment. Here’s how to fix those paint and crayon spills in order to make your carpets like new again.

Some stains are difficult to remove from carpets fibers, while others are relatively easy. If you have the occasional paint spill from your child’s artwork project, here’s some good news: paint is easier to remove than many other stains and spills out there! So, take a breather, and follow these steps we’ve laid out for you.

Within just a few minutes of cleaning and one stern look, your child will learn where not to paint—and you’ll learn a lesson in paint removal so that those gorgeous carpets of yours can stay that way! 

Tips for Treating Wet Paint

The general rule of thumb for do-it-yourself stain removal is never to scrub, but to soak up its moisture (and with as much patience as you can handle!) The same approach comes into play when your child has scribbled their “artwork” all over your beautiful burgundy living room carpet. Witnessing the splatter of a palate of finger paints can work you into a frenzy, but instead, run to the paper towels and calmly begin soaking up as much paint as you can. 

Some people make the mistake of ‘blotting’ paint or another substance that has begun to soak into their carpets fibers. This method can actually make matters worse; instead, lay dry paper towels over the wet paint and give it a few seconds to soak up as much liquid as possible. Repeat until there’s no more moisture left.  

At this point, you’ll have removed most of the paint. What’s left will be some dry paint. Leave the remaining steps until the next morning (don’t worry, our step-by-step has you covered!)

How to Remove Dry Paint

There are several options you have to remove dry paint, and both require a razor or knife. Choose nail polish remover or WD-40—both work well as a ‘quick fix’ and get the job done until your professional cleaners can come in and thoroughly clean your carpet stains and spills.

  • If you’re using nail polish remover…this do-it-yourself remedy is quick and fool proof. Lather up your nail polish brush into the solution and begin to apply it onto your carpet. Using a simple brushing motion (similar to how you’d brush nail color onto your nails) dab it with a fresh coat every other minute or so. The color of the paint will begin to fade, and once it does, you can begin to dab the affected area with some cold water and a rag. Vacuum your carpet as a last step, and if the stain hasn’t gone away, contact your trustworthy cleaning professional to discuss stain removal options.
  • If you’re using WD-40…consider it a smart tool to have on hand in order to remove dried paint from the fibers of your carpet. It comes in the form of a spray lubricant and is excellent at breaking down certain spills such as paint. Generously spray the affected area of your carpet with WD-40 and let it sit for up to 25 minutes.

Take a rag, and scrub the paint until you begin to see it come off in bits and pieces onto your rag. Scrub vigorously, and continue to do so until it’s come off on both sides of your rag, leaving very little residue on your carpet. Thoroughly vacuum your carpet, and if a stain persists, contact your local Chem-Dry professional to properly get the job done for you. Happy, healthy and clean carpets are what you deserve…despite how cute that little Picasso of yours may be as he paints them to his heart’s content!


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